So Ken wins again. Yeah, yeah. What’s new. Interestingly, it turns out that even with my single speed times, we’d be in 3rd place in the men’s open duo if we had ridden as a team. One of the leaders actually crashed out today and got pretty badly injured, so we would even have moved up another place to 2nd. But moving up from other people’s injuries isn’t terribly satisfying, so I don’t count that.
Jenn and Stuart came up from Boulder today. Thanks again to Jenn for bringing my other fork. Chris made a scrumptious dinner for us all. Chicken tacos with rice and beans. I ate so much, I can barely move now. Oh, but it was worth it.
Today was Wheeler. My least favorite stage last year. It still reigns supreme in suckiness in my book. Seeing the line of riders walking their bikes up the mountainside as far as the eye can see, was demoralizing. We hiked our bikes to 13,000 feet, then descended into a saddle. Only to hike back out to 12,500 feet. The descent off the back side is sketchy and bumpy. I’m not only a terrible walker, but I felt like a beginner nursing my rigid bike down the rocks and roots. I had another Guyot moment on the way down. My hands were busy strangling the brakes with a kung fu grip. So I had no opportunity to wipe away the deluge of snot running down my chin. Excellent photo op. Then there was a long gradual descent from Copper to Frisco on pavement. The worst kind for having only one gear. Too fast to pedal, too slow to keep up with geared bikes, And then there was the Peaks trail finish. Rocky, rooty, short but steep climbs. That trail keeps coming at you, and it’s hard to get any rhythm because it is filled with obstacles. But I survived it. I’m glad it’s out of the way.
It’s almost midnight. Need to get some Z’s. Tomorrow is the last stage, Gold Dust. A modest 32 miles and 6000 feet of climbing.